Why Are My Pepper Seedlings Turning Purple?

  • Date: December 14, 2022
  • Time to read: 3 min.

Growing peppers is an excellent choice for any garden. Getting them started can be difficult for beginners; they need adequate nutrition and sunlight, or else various problems may occur. One common problem is your pepper seedling turns purple, but why?

Your pepper seedlings may be turning a purplish color because they are suffering from a nutritional deficiency, usually too little phosphorus or too much iron. If the temperature is too extreme, you may also notice purple stripes on your seedlings. 

This article will discuss why your pepper seedlings are turning purple. So keep reading! We have all the answers you need.

Pepper Seedlings Turning Purple, But Why?

You may see your plants take on a variety of colors as they grow from seedlings into adult plants; however, some of these colors may indicate that your plant is suffering from a problem. Purple is one such indicator when it comes to pepper plants.

It generally occurs from a nutritional deficiency or your pepper plants suffering from extreme heat. Nutritional deficiencies such as too little phosphorus will cause your pepper seedling to turn purple, as this is their way of expressing they are under stress.

Likewise, if your pepper feelings have been planted in soil with an excess of iron, they may begin to turn purple. This always points towards the importance of balanced potting soil and fertilizer for any specific kind of plant.

Another reason you may observe purple stripes on your pepper plants is that they are enduring too much heat. The heat will force the various pigments of your pepper to express themselves, such as the purple pigment known as anthocyanin.

Anthocyanin is expressed in various plants, such as the pepper when stressed due to extreme heat. This will also negatively affect the overall taste of a ripe pepper and possibly the whole yield from the plant.

Tips To Ensure The Seedlings Don’t Turn Purple

If you want to ensure your pepper plants don’t suffer from the various side effects associated with purple pigmentation, you can do a few things to help them. Firstly you’ll have to identify the cause of the pepper plant’s recent purple color.

If purple striping has appeared on your pepper plants, it’s most likely a heat-related issue causing it. There are various options that can help relieve the stress of the sun on your pepper seedlings.

If they are placed in pots outside, ensure that you move them somewhere which doesn’t receive the sun during the hottest part of the day. If they are in the ground, you can add some mulch to protect the root system.

If you clarify that it’s a nutrition problem with your pepper plants, you can fix this by amending the soil. Start by adding fish or bone meal to your soil, as this will increase the amount of phosphorus needed. Alternatively, a good compost will also provide your seedlings with an adequate amount of phosphorus.

If you are over-fertilizing your plants, this may lead to an excess of various nutrients, such as iron, which will also cause your pepper seedlings to turn purple. So, be aware when adding fertilizer, as too much can be as bad as too little.


So, now you know that your pepper plants may be turning purple due to two significant reasons; too much heat and a nutritional deficiency. We have laid out all the necessary fixes in this article so you can ensure you treat your pepper plants so they can return to healthy growth.

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